Cash-short carmaker Saab has lined up a new white knight, it claims, a week after an earlier deal with China’s Hawtai Automotive Group unexpectedly collapsed.
The new deal pairs Saab with Pang Da Automobile, a major Chinese dealership chain, and could be worth more than $150 million to the Swedish maker, which has been struggling to reopen its headquarters assembly plant. That factory was idled on March 29 when key suppliers began a boycott demanding Saab cover unpaid bills.
As part of the new partnership Pang Da will take a 24% stake in Saab – compared to the 29.9% equity holdings Hawtai had negotiated. Pang Da will pay about $100 million for its stake, then another $45 million for vehicles that will be sold through its network of 1,100 dealerships across China. It has also agreed to another $23 million purchase of Saab products within 30 days.
For the Swedish maker, the deal, “will secure Saab automobile’s medium term funding,” said Spyker Cars, Saab’s parent company, in a statement.